Category: Travel

The Rule of Law; Protect Mueller to Protect Democracy

The Rule of Law is the belief that we all are equal under the law, no matter who you are or who you know. Without the Rule of Law, you might end up like Victor. Victor was an honest, gentlemanly Mexican who worked as our chauffeur in the challenging traffic of Mexico City. At least... Read more »

Pedro the Parabolic Pirate and DIRECTV

Moving to Mexico City in the mid 1990s, was no big deal to a lifelong expatriate like Annie. But she did have to admit that there was one thing she’d miss terribly, her beloved PBS. US-based friends said, what about DIRECTV? DIRECTV? In Mexico City, Mexico? She’d already learned of those who’d say, “Oh you’re... Read more »

Gone to the Stars; Death and Friends

“It’s terrible to lose a friend when you don’t have many.” From The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society film I lost my first friend in preschool. She and her sibling were playing with matches in their home when the unimaginable happened. The next friend I remember losing died of childhood leukemia in 1964, a time... Read more »
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Under the Ceiling Fans; Friendships Evolve

  Moving 18 times throughout 7 countries in 45 years, taught me one fact of life. You cannot pack up friendships in a box to take with you when you move. You will have to start from scratch to remake these very important relationships, spending time and energy to rebuild new ones. But somethings can... Read more »

What to do without television? Oy vey!

Under my parents emotional and financial pressure, I was extricated from my first college to transfer to the Henry W. Grady School of Journalism at University of Georgia in 1968. In revenge I majored in Radio-Television-Film, a field of study that offered theater as a minor, and the opportunity to not have to take a... Read more »

Adventures in Rabies and Tetanus in the 3rd World

The Dog Bite In the spring of 1962, 11-year-old Gary was settled in with his family to their new home in Lima, Peru. As the boy made his way to the American Society’s library to pick up a book, he encountered a few dogs congregated at the doorway. Having never met a dog he didn’t love,... Read more »
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The Demon Dentist of Daule (with nod to Sweeney Todd)

In the late 1980s, Sunday was the legally appointed day of rest for domestics in Ecuador. And though in the United States I’d been responsible 7-days a week for my family’s meals, while living in Guayaquil, Ecuador we went local and went out every Sunday for a full lunch. When in Rome. So returning late one... Read more »

Medieval Torture Device; Socialized Medicine

Having a baby under Canada’s socialized medicine, I had zero complaints about socialized medicine. I could get into my GP within 24 hours most of the time. We didn’t have to spend hours fighting with various insurers whose policies change as often as Facebook seems to change privacy settings. And given basic pregnancy was dealt... Read more »

The Ugly American

Lima, Peru-1972-1973 English books being in limited supply, I was often desperate to read something, anything, in English. So I re-read The Bible and parts of whatever encyclopedia was on the shelf. It’s hard to run out of multi-volume encyclopedias. Among one happy find was the 1958 bestseller book by Eugene Burdick and William Lederer, The... Read more »
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Miguel's Tasks; or fluency doesn't equate understanding

Linguistic fluency doesn’t mean you will communicate clearly, it only means that you ought to. For although my husband and I are both native English speakers, from time to time even we miscommunicate with a remarkable ease. So in Ecuador in 1986 it wasn’t uncommon for fluent Spanish speakers to hit vocabulary speed bumps. Take... Read more »
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    Candace Drimmer

    I was an accidental expatriate; love and marriage led me to it. One day I was a bandy-legged kid sitting atop my dogwood tree looking out of my small backyard world in 1950s New Jersey, wanting to move somewhere--anywhere, different. Next thing I knew my father had accepted a job in Houston TX. I was ecstatic, it was a foreign land in 1961 America. After high school graduation, my parents’ gave me a matched set of fawn-colored hardsided American Tourister luggage. Taking the hint, I went to college; well four colleges in five years--it was the 60s after all. Meeting a young hirsute anti-war, soon-to-be-Peace Corps volunteer, I fell in love. After finishing up college coursework for my degree, but before I even walking a graduation stage, I grabbed the paper airline ticket my boyfriend had sent me, my brand-new passport, and was off to the airport and Lima, Peru.

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